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Pandemic Preparedness Capabilities

Testing and evaluating diagnostic preparedness and biobanking: A cross-platform collaboration for validating new diagnostic assays and reviewing PLP capacities

PI(s)/Head responsible for the resource:

Jessica Alm

Host organisation(s):

Department of Microbiology, Tumor and Cell Biology, Karolinska Institutet

Resource description:

In this PLP-Test project, we at National Pandemic Center (NPC) at KI will collaborate with PLP-, healthcare- and governmental partners to test our readiness and cross-collaboration capacity by validating new and broadened diagnostic analyses and to evaluate our achievements and experiences gained during previous PLP-project (G3P) and national tasks during the COVID-19 pandemic. These are important aspects for testing, maintaining and refining collaboration workflows and capabilities for continued laboratory preparedness.

Started as a temporary COVID-19 diagnostic laboratory in March 2020 to support health care with PCR-testing, NPC has developed into a high throughput laboratory with activities within diagnostics, whole genome sequencing and biobanking at national scale. Importantly, all activities have involved several partners across healthcare, governmental partners, and academic partners, with established well-functioning collaborations and logistic chains with the Swedish regions, and productive cooperations with PLP-program partners. This project proposal focusses on validating a newly in-house developed multiplex qPCR for respiratory viral infections (Influenza A and B, RSV and SARS-CoV-2), and validating a DESI-MS-based direct diagnostic platform for COVID-19 and the respiratory viral infections in the multiplex qPCR. Validations involve other PLP-partners for testing assay performance and work- and data flow. We will further test and evaluate routines and accessibility of samples in the national COVID-19 sample collection stored at NPC (established as part of the PLP-project G3P). The proposal is designed to validate and develop new diagnostic platforms, while at the same time evaluate use and availability of the national sample collection, as well as sample logistics and collaboration within the PLP network. The overall aim is to evaluate the performance of our established PLP capabilities, while validating new diagnostic platforms.

Contact information:

Jessica Alm
Department of Microbiology, Tumor and Cell Biology, Karolinska Institutet